Student artwork at museum

Waterville School art teacher Gemma Normington and Dakota Grillo stand by the student art display in the Douglas County Museum. (Empire Press photo/Karen Larsen)


By Karen Larsen
Empire Press Correspondent

Dakota Grillo with her painting that is on display at the Douglas County Museum. (Empire Press photo/Karen Larsen)

Artwork created by Waterville School students forms a part of the exhibits at the Douglas County Museum this season.

The artwork is displayed toward the back of the museum on a folding display board and several easels.

The display was the brainchild of museum docent and retired Waterville School teacher Diane Petersen. Waterville School art teacher Gemma Normington asked for submissions from her students, who are in grades 3-12.

Normington said that getting the artwork ready for display was a good practice exercise for her students. Each student chose matting for their piece and wrote an artist statement. For the display, Normington chose pieces that reflected a variety of styles.

Petersen thought the display could be a way to draw more people into the museum.

Indeed, the new display succeeded in bringing visitors into the museum on June 8.

Bryan Castillo with his artwork (at left) at the Douglas County Museum. (Empire Press photo/Karen Larsen)

Third-grader Bryan Castillo came by in the afternoon especially to see his picture, which is a Japanese-style painting of a vase and flowers. Castillo said that the piece is the one he likes best of all that he has created so far. He especially enjoyed writing the Kanji, or Chinese characters, at the top of the piece. Asked how he felt about seeing his piece in the museum, Castillo answered that it made him feel happy.

Dakota Grillo is another third-grader who came by to see the artwork displayed, and to see her picture on display. Though the pieces displayed are in a large variety of styles, Castillo and Grillo both happened to submit their Japanese vase and flower paintings.

Grillo said she enjoyed writing the Kanji. In Asian style, she made a stamp out of a foam square with her initials engraved in it to be the signature. She creatively covered up an accident in which a classmate dripped some paint on her picture by adding some additional flowers at the top.

Asked how she felt about seeing her painting in the museum, Grillo said, ?I feel excited.?

The artwork will be on display throughout the summer. Normington said she would like to get?new artwork from students next year.

The museum is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Sunday until the end of September. For more information, call 745-8435.